The English program prepares undergraduate majors for careers in teaching, law, business, and other fields that require critical writing and communication skills. The department offers a Bachelor of Arts with or without secondary teaching licensure. In addition to programs in English education and literature, the department sponsors a concentration in creative or professional writing.
The English major is designed to cultivate both historical understanding and critical skills. In addition to the basic set of requirements, English majors can choose from a varied selection of electives and specialized options. For English minors and non-majors, our program provides all kinds of opportunities to explore the worlds of literature and culture. By design, the BA in English provides students with a comprehensive array of courses rooted in the conviction that the study of literature is committed to the development of reading, writing, and thinking skills - all of which are necessary beyond disciplinary study and a requirement sought by employers in all professions.
The English major curriculum focuses on providing students with the necessary tools needed to develop their critical engagement with texts and their exploration of the dynamic field of English studies, covering a wide gamut of historical periods, geographical zones, and critical approaches. To this end, the course of study follows a coherent, yet flexible, sequence that begins with a survey of the critical approaches and questions germane to the study of literature in English. From there, the major requires students to take all four survey courses (American Literature I & II and British Literature I & II), which provide a broad but comprehensive outline of the major works, authors, and literary movements that constitute literary history. Our survey courses also introduce students, through the courses' organization, to both the traditional and newer canons of the discipline. In addition, students are also required to take a course that exposes them to works by racially and ethnically diverse writers, thereby fully engaging their appreciation and understanding of the variety of voices and concerns found in Anglophone literary production.
Moving beyond the required sequence of courses, the student is allowed to explore the discipline and its array of period, subject, and generic topics - pursuing self-defined tracks that can be configured narrowly toward a specialization or comprehensively toward a generalist orientation. Either way, the curriculum is designed to fully engage students in their exploration of literature in English as a discipline while continually reinforcing the discipline's core values of critical thinking and effective communication skills.
English BA Degree Requirements (124 hours)
English BA Semester Guide
Availability: Hattiesburg Campus and Gulf Park Campus
Admission Requirements: See University Admission Policies
Program Academic Policies and Requirements: